Along with pizza, lasagna is one of the most popular dishes in the world. And naturally, there is a very big difference between lasagna purchased in the frozen food section and lasagna made at home.
There are many lasagna recipes available. However, when people refer to "real lasagna", they often mean a very specific version: lasagna Bolognese. Today, we are going to prepare one together. To your apron!
The sauce: the secret to making lasagna Bolognese
If you want to make lasagna Bolognese properly, you must of course start by preparing the sauce. Again, several options are possible. If you're in a hurry, you'll probably want to choose a sauce in a jar purchased at the grocery store. But the most epicurean of you will probably want to make it from scratch. If this is you, here's how.
Is the secret really in the sauce?
The secret's not really in the sauce. Rather, it is in the choice of fresh ingredients used to make it. So when it comes to getting everything you need, don't skimp on freshness.
When preparing the Bolognese sauce, a little like the one we put in our Carnivore pizza, heat a little oil in a large frying pan. While it is heating, cut 1 carrot, 1 onion and 1 celery branch into small pieces. Add them to the pan and cook them until they are tender. Then add 500 grams of beef and 350 grams of ground pork. Brown them and, once the liquid has evaporated, add a little white wine and stir.
When the wine has evaporated, salt and pepper the mixture, stir a little and add 250 grams of tomato paste or a can of crushed tomatoes, whichever suits you best. Both can do the job very well.
Stir again and cook over low heat for at least 1 hour. The longer you cook the sauce, the more flavourful it will be. However, be sure to keep the heat as low as possible and stir from time to time.
The sauce... continued
Some lasagna Bolognese recipes are made with tomato sauce and béchamel sauce. If you are tempted by this creamy craving, here's how to make your own.
In a first saucepan, heat 1 litre of milk, without boiling it. In a second pan, add ½ a stick of butter in cubes and melt over low heat. Once it is liquefied, temporarily remove the pan from the heat and add 2/3 cup of all-purpose flour, ensuring that no lumps are formed. Put the pan back on the stove and add the hot milk, a little salt, pepper and nutmeg. Stir the mixture quickly with a whisk until it thickens and becomes smooth.
What about the pasta?
Once the sauce(s) have been prepared, all that remains is to assemble the lasagna.
Uh... Wait a minute... Where's the lasagna pasta in all this? Well, we haven't covered it yet because you have several choices: fresh pasta, express dry pasta, which can go directly to the oven, and traditional dry pasta, which requires cooking in boiling water beforehand.
If you choose fresh pasta, you don't need to cook it before assembling, just like dry express pasta, which doesn't need to be boiled. If you choose traditional dry pasta, simply cook it in a pot of boiling water before putting everything together.
Assembling your lasagna Bolognese
Well, now that everything is in place, let's resume our assembly. This can be done by pouring a thin layer of béchamel sauce into the bottom of an ovenproof dish. Cover with a thin layer of Bolognese sauce, then pasta. Don't let them overlap too much.
Repeat the process in the same order until you get 5 or 6 "layers". On the last layer of pasta, place a slightly larger amount of béchamel sauce and bolognese sauce to prevent the pasta from drying out during cooking. Finally, finish by sprinkling a little Parmesan cheese on top or between layers if you wish. Finally, bake at 400 Fahrenheit for about 20 minutes or slightly longer.
A chef's tip that can make all the difference
A final tip: if you want the lasagna to keep its shape after cutting, alternate the direction of the pasta between layers. So, if you put your first layer of pasta lengthwise, put the second layer widthwise and so on. This will make your lasagna hold up better.
Make and enjoy the best lasagna Bolognese in town
There are about as many lasagna recipes as there are cooks. Of course, the lasagna we have just prepared with you is one of many and we have been careful not to reveal all our secrets. After all, we like it when you visit our restaurant!